BlackRobe – The Sacred and the Holy

https://youtu.be/qdD9YUeBDlI

Concepts to think about:

  • Why were priests involved in the enterprise of colonization?
  • How do the colonizers sacralize the “New World”?
  • How is the “New World” profane?
  • What is the relationship between power and knowledge in both religions? i.e. The knowledge of the book versus the knowledge of the forest.
  • Analyze the dialogue between Father LaForgue and Daniel. How do their views differ concerning the natives and their beliefs?
  • How does Father LaForgue represent the modern “man”?
  • Is father Laforgue’s understanding of conversion more about right belief or right action?
  • How do the Natives and French see each other?
  • What are the consequences that natives face after their conversion to Christianity?
  • Why is it so important for Father Laforgue to convert the natives?
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22 responses to “BlackRobe – The Sacred and the Holy

  1. Dear professor Londono, When we finish watching the movie, are we suppose to answer all of these questions that you have posted on the blog? I do not understand. I have watched the movie, but what is it that I need to do after I finish watching it? Do I just put my opinion about the movie or do I need to answer these questions? Thank you and I am sorry for bothering you about this

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    • The questions I post are simply to give you direction. These are the concepts you need to incorporate in your thinking so that your comment is relevant and on point with the readings. You may choose to answer the questions directly or use them to shape your commentary. I want to read about your reaction, and how you analyze and interpret the movie based on what you learned from the readings and lecture.

      Make sure you display your name not your email so I can grade your comments.

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  2. -Colonizers sacralize the new world by creating a specific space that is now then considered sacred. The colonizers built a building and placed a cross in the front to symbolize that the structure itself was sacred. As we see in the beginning of the movie, Daniel walks in the sacred building and kneels shortly after, sort of recognizing there was a presence of God. And also, towards the end of the movie, after his long and difficult journey Father Laforgue comes upon another building with a cross out front, where he finds safety in a sacred place.
    -The relationship between power and knowledge is different in both religions. The natives power comes from nature, to be able to get food and be knowledgeable of the resources available to them. Also, their belief in the power of dreams, thinking a dream is more real than ‘death or battle’. The difference in the colonists’ religion is the power of sharing the word of God, which is why we see them trying to convert the natives to Christianity. In one scene we see Father Laforgue writing in his book, and two natives approach him and ask him what he is doing. Father Laforgue has the native tell him something he did not know before, and he was able to write it down and share it with Daniel, who also had no knowledge of it before. After, he says to the natives, “there is a lot more I can teach you to do”; in this case, sharing the power of reading and writing to spread knowledge.
    – I believe Father Laforgue’s understanding of conversion is more about right action. One night, we saw two of the natives having intercourse right in front of everyone sleeping, and the Father was wide awake, up and looking at them. Later on, he suddenly wakes up in the early morning and goes outside to take a walk. While walking, he sees Daniel also having intercourse, with the native’s daughter Annuka. After seeing this, Father Laforgue runs off to a secluded place and begins praying, obviously distraught. The Father felt as if he was not faithful to his God, so he grabbed a tree branch and whipped himself on the back for his wrong actions, just for witnessing it.
    -After spending time with the natives, Father Laforgue and Daniel have developed different views of the natives and their beliefs. The Father is scared of the new land, and believes the devil rules the people there and won’t let them accept the truth of their teachings. Daniel on the other hand, believes they are true Christians, living for each other and forgiving each other. Daniel listened to Annuka and their beliefs about the afterworld, but Father Laforgue thinks the natives have no concept of one and considers the idea childish. But Daniel understands just because the two religions differ in certain characteristics does not mean they are wrong.
    -The French see the natives as uncivilized and as savages. In the Father’s eyes, he sees them as ruled by the devil. In the natives eyes, they compare them to dogs with hair on their faces. And about their beliefs, the natives think Father Laforgue is a demon, and as something they need to get rid of or he will curse their people.

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  3. From the very beginning of the movie, the tension between both the french and the natives is obvious. The french refer to the natives as “wild woodsmen” and “savages,” while the natives believe that the french are stupid and demonic. The relationship between both power and knowledge between both religions is also seen throughout the movie. The natives believe that power comes from the knowledge of knowing how to live with their resources in nature. This is seen when Annuka’s father tells Annuka that Daniel is stupid and will not be able to provide for her. This is because he believes that Daniel does not have the knowledge about nature like they do. While the colonists believe that power comes from knowing the word of God. I found it interesting that both Daniel and Laforgue had very different views throughout the movie. In the beginning of the movie, Laforgue aims to convert the Indians in order to convert as many people as possible, but I think he later changes to a view of converting the Indians not because he wants to convert as many people as possible but to actually help them. On the contrary, Daniel is instantly accepting of the Indians beliefs and values both the natives beliefs and Laforgue’s beliefs.

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  4. In the colonization of the new world, the priest was a big figure. He makes the land place safe and not wild. Every place that the settlers colonized, there was a church and a priest. This makes the place more holy and safe. As movies progress the priest and a settler goes out to west with native Americans. They both have same views about each other. the native Americans sees the french as “savages”. they considered the priest in black robe as a demon. While the french see the native Americans as wild.
    At the end of the movie, the priest was alone in a settlement in the west. there the native Americans come to the priest in search for help because the people were dying of sickness. it is when he converts the native Americans to christian. after few years they all get killed by other native Americans at the very end of the movie.

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  5. The Jesuits, known to the Indians as Black Robes, presented themselves as a threat to many Native American tribes. Their initial mission was to convert the indigenous people of present day Canada to their established religion of Catholicism. They intended to do this with or without their consent. Many families, as well as young men and women, and priests migrated to New France in hopes of new opportunity, economic prosperity, and religious revival. In my opinion, their ultimate goal was to bring all the power and glory to France. Priests were involved in the enterprise of colonization for various reasons. One, their intention was to spread the word of God to the New World. Religious authorities wanted to fulfill their duties as evangelizers by converting what they thought as barbaric people, to a new religion. Father Laforgue questioned, “If we do not change them, how can they enter heaven?” The French conquistadors believed they were doing a holy deed by redeeming more souls. The New World was seen as profane to the French because they were uncivilized and uncultured. The French were blind to the Indians native beliefs, traditions, and ways of living. Europeans thought of the Indians as savages. On the converse, the Indians felt nothing the French did made sense. The Indians considered Europeans as poorly educated due to their little understanding of spiritual life. They found it difficult to understand a new religion, let alone foreign customs. Colonizers sacralized the New World by marking territory on which they would inhabit and worship. They did this by constructing various buildings, some marked by crosses in front to identity them as sacred places. I also believe the colonizers sacralized the new territory by the control of the Indian’s religious worship. In my opinion, Father LaForgue’s understanding of conversion is more about right action because of his interpretation that he himself is called to spread the word of God. He follows rules of righteous standard and self control for the sake of the rule, not necessarily righteous belief. For example, on two occasions he witnesses the natives, engaging in sexual intercourse. Opposed to Daniel who succumbs to temptation, Father LaForgue upheld his obligation to the moral rule of chastity and purity. The consequences of conversion for the Indians include eradication of their native customs and religious beliefs. They were forced to take on a new identity they had never asked for.

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  6. I’ve enjoyed watching “Black Robe” because its a real eye opener on how the Europeans came into the new world and try to take control over the native Americans. One important aspect in a persons life is what they believe in and when the Europeans attempted to convert the indigenous people to Christianity they didn’t want to accept. Every person has their own perspective of life, just like the natives had their own. Daniel would question Father Laforgue about his beliefs. He started to question religion, while Father Laforgue wouldn’t question his own beliefs. He believed that the natives had to be converted in order for them to go to heaven. Father Laforgue wanted to civilize the natives by teaching them how to write, and teaching them how to question and plan things. The natives ways of living were for the moment, and that didn’t do well for Father Laforgue. I feel like father laforgue’s understanding of conversion is more about the right belief than the right action. He believed that you need to believe in his god in order to be a good person. The natives have their own god as well as afterlife. They are good people to each other but father laforgue sticks to his beliefs and believes that his is the right one. Daniel argues with father laforgue because Daniel is doubting Christianity.
    The Europeans tried to encourage the natives to change their ways but it wasn’t an easy transition. The natives weren’t born into the same civilization as the Europeans were. The indigenous people encountered various obstacles in their lives in order to survive in the wild which brought upon their ways of thinking. Overall it was a beautiful movie because you see these two worlds colliding, the “white mans world” vs “the natives”.

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  7. At first glance I assumed the movie would be very uneventful, but I found, once it finished, how wrong I was. The priest were involved throughout colonization, because during that time Catholicism was the only world religion and in order to live in harmony the same faith was required. To the Natives, the “New World” would take the definition of profane because their beliefs aren’t the same; the forest and their dreams are their “Gods”. They didn’t understand literature or the inventions these “white men” created, so to their knowledge it was all sorcery. The Natives views were more towards strength and physical ability in contrast with the French who were intellectual, which is why the Natives perceived the French as demons and the French perceived them as mad-men. Daniels point of view changes with the intimate relationship he builds and argues with Father Laforgue about no one religion being less believable than the other. Father Laforgue wants the Natives to believe in a heaven where they all “sit in heaven and look at God”, but to them a heaven is their spirits hunting other animals spirits. Overall this movie is enlightening, but I was awestruck in the sense that the Natives were right about their enemies defeating them 15 years after their acceptance. Also, after all the struggle that the French went through it amazed me that they abandoned the Natives, so I questioned the “love” they said they had towards them.

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  8. At the beginning of the movie the priest was part of the colonization due to Catholicism’s role in the world at the time. Catholicism was extremely important because it was the only religion known to man. The natives believed the New World was dangerous, because it invited different beliefs and ideas into their lives. The French colonizers believed in Catholic ideals, while the natives looked at nature and dreams as their Gods. The New World was so strange to the natives that they were convinced it was all sorcery. On the other hand, the French looked at the natives as cave man living in prehistoric times. Through out the movie, one of the main characters, Daniel, tries explaining to Father Laforgue how his people should be open to accepting other religions other than their own. But Father is not persuaded, he wants the natives to transform to traditional Catholicism. Thus leaving the natives in a difficult situation since they are already accustomed to their own way of living in the forest with their own religion.

    I agree with Daniel’s way of thinking, because he is open minded and respects the native’s religion even if it’s outrageous and completely different from his own. Daniel exemplifies a mind set way ahead of his time. While Father Laforgue is too stubborn to realize that the natives do believe in God, just not the same God as him. That doesn’t mean the natives are devil worshipers, it just means they have unique beliefs that are distinct from Catholicism.

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  9. First, there is a lot that can be said about this movie. In that time period, Christianity was the main religion in Europe. They believed this to be the one true religion. When colonization came around, they went out to the “New World” and tried spreading their religion. To the French, they believed that they needed to convert the natives. You can say that the “New World” is profane because the natives find it ordinary and just their place to live in contrast with the French that can turn it into a sacred place by building their churches on it. This can also be seen vice versa because it can be sacred place to the natives but not to the French. This movie can help us further understand how different the natives are from the French. For example, the French have all this literature and book knowledge but to the natives, they dont really believe in that. To the natives, the forest is the real supernatural power or “god” but to the French, they believe in the one Christian God that is up in Heaven. The natives believe that you need to learn the resources of nature while the French relied on the book. Their beliefs were obviously very different and so this creates conflict. The natives would look at the priest in his attire and believe that it is a demon while the French just see this people as crazy and savages and that their beliefs do not make any sense. Its very interesting seeing Daniels point of view on the Natives and their beliefs compared to the way that Father Laforgue sees them. I would say that Daniel has a more open-minded mindset towards the natives and is actually thinking about their beliefs while questioning his own religion however Father Laforgue has more of a closed-minded mindset and believes that the only way to go to heaven is to his way and he is right and the native are wrong. I would think that Father Laforgue is more about right action because it seems to me that one main reason why he has a closed mindset on the natives is because of the way they do things which is basically action. Either way, I enjoyed the movie and i believe that it is really interesting seeing the different points of view. This movie can really help us understand how complicated things can be when it comes to understand another persons religion, and this is something that us humans have been dealing with through all of our history. Very good movie

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  10. Tristan Plasencia

    -Priests were involved in the enterprise of colonization because they were the highest rank of the church. Priests were viewed as holy figures that possessed divine powers which the French believed could be used to convert the Native Americans to Catholicism.
    -Once the colonizers reach the New World, they feel entitled to make it their own and sacralize it according to their own religious beliefs. With this being said, the colonizers established a “church” with a cross next to it to symbolize their religion. They turn the unknown into the known by making it “holy”.
    -The “New World” is profane because it is unfamiliar to the colonists and lacks the basic elements that would give it religious value, such as churches accompanied with crosses.
    -In terms of the French, knowledge and power comes from establishing a personalized relationship with god. You must surrender yourself to god and follow his laws in order to obtain “power” through the religion. Everything is spiritual and it is all about the individual’s relationship with god. In terms of the natives’ religion, power and knowledge comes from your understanding of the natural world around you. Understanding your surroundings will allow you to find food and other necessities for life, which relates to both knowledge and power. The native religion also puts emphasis on dreams, as they believe that dreams can dictate what will happen to you in the physical world.
    -Father Loforgue view the natives and their beliefs as childish. He believes that anyone that does not accept the Catholic religion as their own will be condemned to hell. He has no interest in listening or accommodating to the natives way of life, he is there solely to convert them to his religion. Daniel, on the other hand, has a more accepting attitude towards the natives and their religious beliefs. Daniel falls in love with one of the natives and begins to embrace their religious laws. At one point he tells Father Loforgue about an afterlife and when Father Laforgue tells him that’s nonsense Daniel replies, “Is it any harder to believe than a paradise where we all sit on clouds and look at God?”
    -Laforgue represents the modern “man” by conducting his life closely intertwined with his beliefs. He stays true to what he believes in and only seeks progression when it comes to assisting others.
    -Father Laforgue’s understanding of conversion is more about right action. As a priest he takes pride in following the laws of his religion and thinks that to reach the ultimate destination (heaven), you must live a pure life. This can be examined when Father Laforgue whips himself in the back with a tree branch after witnessing Daniel getting intimate with a Native American.
    -The Natives and the French basically see each other the same way. The Natives view the French as intruders trying to impose a bogus religion upon their people and land. They view the priest as a demon. The French view the Natives as savages, ignorant to the catholic religion and needed to be “domesticated” by the French.
    -The consequences of conversion for the Natives would, in their eyes, ultimately be death and shame brought upon their tribe. By converting, they are throwing away all of their previous very strong beliefs and adopting a whole new ideology.
    -It is so important for Father Laforgue to convert the natives because he feels as though it is his duty as a priest to “save” these Natives and spread the word of his god. He views the conversion process as an obligation that he holds as a priest.

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  11. The priests were pivotal in the role of converting the ‘New World’ to Christianity. This ‘New World’ is “profane” to the preists and full of human actions that seem to be considered lowly by them. For instance: the various times Father LaForgue witnesses the act of intercourse. These acts represent the humanness in all of us, though LaForgue whips himself after witnessing it because he feels this is a tainted act. The irony of LaForgue’s attempt to remove himself from the rawest form of humanness occurs in the scene where he is defecating into a river–because he, too, is human.
    Knowledge of the world is essential to survival for the Native Americans, this gives them the power to thrive. Knowledge of the book is more valued to the Christians, as it outlines the path to heaven.
    The interesting parts of the movie were especially in the parts of dialogue between LaForgue and Daniel. We see two men from the same environment, in the same situation, with two different opinions.
    Daniel is more accepting to the Native American ways, represented in his intercourse with Annuka. He attempts to persuade LaForgue to see other religions as competent, but LaForgue is reluctant to change.
    This movie presented a number of interesting dynamics, and was definitely thought inducing.

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  12. Set in 1634, the Black Robe explores a time where the contrast of religion in the world is something of absurd nature. Guided by a group of natives to explore the lands of Quebec, Cananda, Father Laforgue and his french men set their eyes on change. Father Laforgue and Daniel, who were chosen to lead the expedition, aim to reestablish the land for the purposes of embedding the Jesuit mission into the Natives and their culture. Conflict arises when the Natives begin to believe that Father Laforgue, in his dominant and forceful ways, must belong to some sort of demon or form of sorcery. This is where we truly begin to see the differences between the french and the natives. The french view their God is this distant celestial form; a God who is all perfect. In this belief, Laforgue find himself aiming for this unreachable standard of life. He is in constant repression towards his natural human state. On the other hand, the natives, who idolize the God of the forests, are in full acceptance of their human nature. They believe it to be the way they were created.

    I find it quite comical how the two religions in this movie are perceived in this dramatic state of either total domination or total freedom. In actuality, the two collide in more ways than one. This vertical aspect of God being so unattainable and perfect, is an unreachable approach to understanding God. While, God being so in tune with human nature that He is all that we are, is placing God in the state mere human. I believe that God, while reigning in the celestial kingdom, also inhabits our world and exposes himself through nature and the beauty of His creation. This movie has allowed me to explore these thoughts based on the collision between different religions and their views. It is a movie that will cause you to think about the future or religion as well as its historical backgrounds.

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  13. History textbooks always describe that with the colonization of new lands came the Jesuit’s effort to convert the natives of those lands, but they fail to go into detail about the native’s struggle with converting. Black Robe perfectly depicts both sides of the story, showing how difficult it was for both the European missionaries and the locals of the land. For those settlers to truly colonize the land, they first had to make natives convert to Christianity beginning with baptism, and with their individual selves being baptized in way the land itself became “baptized”; the land became sacred space. In the film, it is very apparent how different the natives’ and the Jesuit’s views were, and how one worship the physical surroundings it depended on and the other is devoted to the abstract idea of a God in the sky. Even though father LaForgue played upon both the terrifying and fascinating aspects of going to paradise by God’s salvation, the natives were too reluctant and doubtful of that strange concept. Father LaForgue, a devout Jesuit is so convinced that the “savages” need to find God that is unaccepting of their own beliefs and mentality. In a way he is blinded by his own veneration and makes no effort to understand the natives. On the other hand, Daniel is a character that provides an awareness and acceptance of both sides of the conflict, learning about the Native’s beliefs although he is also Christian. The natives see the French, especially Laforgue or “black robe” as demonic and thoughtless and reject the simplest act of even written language as repulsive. To them what they do not understand is demonic, while to the French what is unusual is savage. Perhaps what serves as the starkest indicator of religion or the sacred in the film is the matter of death. On their unfortunate encounter with the Iroquois, father Laforgue chants a prayer when forced to sing, does the sign of the cross on every dead body he encounters, and believes they will never see “heaven” or “paradise”. The natives find this silly and illogical; to them their idea of death is not as important or real as their dreams and their spirits become part of the forest. The film Black Robe seems to have the implicit question of, through the other’s eyes, what belief of sacredness and religion will be seen as more ridiculous?
    Paula Gutierrez

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  14. In this movie we see the attempts to show the contrasts in behaviour between the civilised Christians and the so called savages. The main idea is to show the different and divided cultures trying to comprehend each other. Religion is strongly debated throughout the film, with the natives eyeing the Catholic Blackrobes and their beliefs with suspicion. The native religion’s alternative to a priest, called Shamans, at one point confront Father Laforgue, viewing him as a demon, as the Jesuit views the Shaman and his beliefs as utter nonsense. This being said the New World was considered profane because they believed there was more than one God and did not believe the Christians were not as pure as they tried to make themselves look.

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  15. I’d like to agree with what someone wrote as well, the tension between them in the beginning is very obvious. The way they treat each other is to be honest like savages, but I want to focus more on the the dialogue between the indians and the whites/their beliefs. Focusing on the character Daniel, his beliefs on christianity are very strong until he starts living with them. Unlike his father, he thinks Indian’s beliefs are just as valid as christianity, he wants to convert to their religion. He accepts their religion and wants to convert quickly. Laforgue on the other hand believes in christianity and thinks that everyone’s main goal should be to convert to that religion gradually over time because it’s his main goal. Although, Daniel and Laforgue have different opinions, we see later on in the movie a scene that shows Daniel seeing how the indians live and their rituals and he starts to think he was a little in over his head and quickly goes back to Laforgue telling him that maybe the indian rough life isn’t for him. We see him as a mediator character that’s stuck in the middle with the whites and indians that basically accepts both religions.

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  16. This was a very interesting movie. During this “Black Robe”, I took notes of (in my opinion) important and interesting things I noticed during the film. It was very important for the priests to convert the Natives because they wanted to show them the “pathway to paradise” and one of the high priests even mentioned that “If we don’t change them, how will they enter Heaven?”. What is interesting about these statements is that it seemed to me that they were only trying to convert the Natives for their (the priests) own good…The High Priest said to a younger one “What more glorious task than to convert them”. To me, this meant that if they converted the Natives, then they would “look better in God’s eyes and have a better and easier way into heaven.
    Another scene that i found interesting was in the beginning where the Frenchman was getting all dressed up in top gear and robes listening to his French music, while on the other side the Native Indian was also putting on his best clothes listening to his music. They come from different cultures and have different traditions, but putting on their highest and best quality clothes has the same importance and meaning to them as they go to speak to each other. A little last minute side note that i found cool to see was when the priest (Black Robe) showed the Native Indian what writing words meant, and that is how they would spread the “Word of God” and teach people about God, and how the word has been passed down and told throughout generations.

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  17. I just finished watching this film and it left me in awe. It was beautifully filmed. It showed the contrast between two sets of beliefs/cultures and what they stand for. While the Jesuit priest, Father Laforgue, (along with Daniel) was sent to convert the Native Americans, they became weary about him because they believed that he was a demon, especially because of his “Black Robe”. Daniel, on the other hand, was able to understand where the natives were coming from and he tried to help the priest understand, although he was very stubborn toward the idea, because Laforgue believed that Christianity was the superior religion. The way this film portrayed these two groups and their beliefs made the differences very obvious. Laforgue had very strict standards, and repressed all of his instincts as a human, because of his promise to god, while the Native Americans accepted their human nature and believed in the supernatural power of the forests. What mostly shocked me about this movie was how closed minded the Jesuit priest was and how he kept insisting to the Native Americans that Christianity was the religion that they needed to follow or they weren’t going to reach “Paradise”. A religion should be chosen out of ones own free will.

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  18. I have always found it interesting how some cultures relentlessly try to convert other cultures. In The Black Robe the Frenchmen, specifically Father LaForgue, are trying to convert the Algonquin Indians to Catholicism. In his attempt to convert the tribe Father LaForgue foregoes a journey to new land called the Huron Village. Throughout the journey to Huron Village, Father LaForgue, Daniel, and the Algonquin Indians begin to learn more about each other and their traditions and beliefs. Chomina, the leader of Algonquin Indians, is a clairvoyant who has dreams that he believes predicts events. In one of his dreams, he comes to believe that Father LaForgue is the devil, causing his tribe to later on in the movie abandon him. Later, Chomina resents leaving Father LaForgue behind and retreats to go find him. By the end of the movie, Father LaForgue tries one last time to convert Chomina, who is dying, to Christianity but fails. In the end Father LaForgue baptizes and converts the Hurons. Black Robe is not like any other movie I’ve seen before. I thought it was interesting how Father LaForgue still tried to convert Chomina on his death bed but he still refused. That tells me that Chomina really had faith in his own religion, one that isn’t really made 100% clear to us throughout the film. In the end, I can say that I enjoyed this movie.

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  19. The movie represents the Christianization of the New World and those civilizations who never got in touch with the Christian religion. How it usually was, the Church was sending priests to convert people to the new faith. In a profane world such as The New World, some kind of behaviors were seen as uncivilized for the European, and since the ultimate goal was to rule over the new civilizations, they had to change them beforehand. The religion is what gives the two different parts the strength to keep going in a place where the people have to fight against the nature and enemies to survive. Father LaForgue is the priest who is in charge of converting the natives to Christianity. He uses the power of knowledge to chance the natives’ minds, however, they see the priest as a demon and reading and writing as magic. In my opinion, the religion is more used to persuade the natives to obey, in fact we can notice that the two tribes are very different, the one who embrace Christianity is easier to control and command, and they abandoned violence. Instead the other tribe is still loyal to the old religion, and much more difficult to surrender to the colonies. The reality is also perceived in two different ways, the reality of dreams and nature is the main characteristic of the native’s religion, on the other hand, Christianity is devoted to God and the reality is the one described in the old scripts. LaForgue is devoted to the idea of saving the souls of the natives, however the natives cannot understand the deep concept of the new religion, in fact their way of thinking remains strictly attached to the tangible world. A pragmatic mindset which is shown in the last scene where the natives receive the baptism because they think it will save their life, not because they believe in the new God, it is necessary to survive.

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  20. BlackRobe was an interesting take on colonization by the Europeans. Daniel and father LaFourge travel to Canada in order to convert the native people to Catholicism I’m this new imago mundi. The French colonizers wanted to spread the word of God to what they considered to be “Barbaric people”. This was their way of purifying and sacralizo get the land. Throughout the movie you see a clear disconnect and divide when it comes to the natives and the French conqueror’s. The natives believe in the knowledge of nature, they see the colonizers as demons and find them to be stupid. On the other hand, the French believe in Catholicism and disregard the natives spirituality, they consider them to be savages and need saving. Purification through the sacralization of these new lands. During the movie you notice the clear contrasting personalities of LaFourge and Daniel. Daniel seems to be more empathetic and open minded to the native way of life while LaFourge maintains the mentality that these savage, profane people need to be saved through the conversion to Catholicism. This, in turn, would make the colonizers “better men” in the eyes of god because they believe they’re saving the natives from eternal damnation.

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